Wildlife to see in January

Bittern © Philip Watson

Many of January’s landscapes remain full of overwintering birds enjoying Britain’s mild maritime climate

January sees the region’s wetlands heaving with winter visitors from foreign shores as well as our native ducks, geese and swans, meaning that there is plenty to see. It’s a great time to look out for something a little rare, such as goosander, scaup and the striking smew. Try YWT North Cave Wetlands near Hull or Tophill Low near Beverley – it’s a 40 minute drive between the two so if you wish you could plan a day to do both!

Wherever you go, look out for redwings, fieldfares, continental blackbirds (alongside our resident birds), song thrushes, robins, siskins and redpolls, even waxwings during the harshest of winters. For latest birding news from eastern Yorkshire check out Filey Bird Observatory, Flamborough Bird Observatory, Spurn Bird Observatory and Birdguides.

The Yorkshire Wolds is a great place to see red kites with good chances of spotting these birds on an afternoon walk around Nunburnholme, Thixendale and Londesborough on the Yorkshire Wolds.

Otters are on the wildlife spotting wish list of many, and a cold snap can give a better chances of seeing these elusive creatures. Patience is required, but a visit to Tophill Low near Beverley is one of the best places to visit to try and spot one – there is even an otter holt camera in one of the wildlife hides.

A cold, icy morning may find the usually elusive bittern stepping out for a skate around the reeds edge at RSPB Blacktoft Sands or Hornsea Mere.

Yorkshire Coast Nature

Yorkshire Coast Nature is an independent Yorkshire based wildlife tourism company offering a variety of activity tours, events and workshops for all levels of interest from beginner to advanced. Visit www.yorkshirecoastnature.co.uk to view all tours, events and workshops.